Culture Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School  

Bailey Brown
28.7k votes 2.6k voters 24.1k views 37 items

List Rules Vote up the books you could have gone without reading in middle school.

Regardless of your current appreciation or disdain for literature, the books you have to read in middle school were not always necessary. There are, of course, exceptions, such as Eli Weisel's Night, a memoir which details Weisel's history as a Holocaust survivor and introduces many young students to the story of WWII. Additionally, every district approaches reading requirements differently - meaning your least-favorite novel from the early years of high school or later years of elementary is someone else's middle school experience. The person who approaches Anne of Green Gables as a too-cool-for-school middle schooler might not appreciate the story like a more comprehensive reader would. 

Some of the best books of all time - like Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird - were middle-school requirements for many, but that doesn't mean every paperback your 12-year-old self read impacted your intellectual, moral, social, or spiritual capacity the way a good book often does. And just because you might have enjoyed reading Lowry's The Giver doesn't mean it was necessary.

The best books you were required to read in middle school are also sometimes the least important. Which novels do you think you could have gone without back in junior high?

1
750 531
Where the Red Fern Grows is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
2
762 558
The Outsiders is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
S. E. Hinton
3
629 453
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
4
668 486
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
5
580 443
The Call of the Wild is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Jack London
6
687 539
The Scarlet Letter is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Nathaniel Hawthorne
7
688 560
Lord of the Flies is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
William Golding
8
686 567
The Great Gatsby is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
F. Scott Fitzgerald
9
723 610
Hatchet is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Gary Paulsen
10
512 450
Tuck Everlasting is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Natalie Babbitt
11
464 425
The Grapes of Wrath is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
John Steinbeck
12
439 402
Are You There God? It's Me, Ma... is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
13
438 401
Black Beauty is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Anna Sewell
14
504 470
The Giver is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Lois Lowry
15
427 400
Bridge to Terabithia is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Donna Diamond, Katherine Paterson
16
385 371
Shiloh is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
17
392 385
Anne of Green Gables is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Lucy Maud Montgomery
18
363 355
Matilda is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Roald Dahl
19
431 433
The Crucible is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Arthur Miller
20
458 472
The Sisterhood of the Travelin... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
21
349 355
Because of Winn-Dixie is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Kate DiCamillo
22
436 457
The Hobbit is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
J. R. R. Tolkien
23
283 291
Island of the Blue Dolphins is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
24
331 414
Diary of a Wimpy Kid is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Jeff Kinney
25
268 333
Watership Down is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Books You Didn't Really Need To Read In Middle School
Richard Adams